Red Bull deserves its success in F1, Ferrari team boss Stefano Domenicali insists.
There had been appearances of bad blood between the title contenders of late, particularly with Dr Helmut Marko suggesting Spaniard Alonso is more focused on politics than winning.
‘I can assure you that Fernando is focused on his performance,’ Domenicali told reporters at the annual media event at Madonna di Campiglio.
‘And to those who take a dig at him in the hope that they can find a weak point, all I can say is that we’ll reply on the track, with facts and by trying to be the best,’ he added.
It has been suggested Red Bull’s meteoric success in the past years is difficult for Ferrari to swallow, given the Maranello team’s long and rich history, and the fact today’s dominant force is the maker of an energy drink.
‘Besides,’ Domenicali is quoted by La Gazzetta dello Sport, ‘it’s only been three seasons, not a lifetime, and when that run stops, then everyone will remember the winning runs of Ferrari, McLaren and Williams.’
He denied Red Bull is being ‘protected’ by Bernie Ecclestone and the FIA, but Domenicali did suggest: ‘Red Bull represents an investment in the sport of F1 and in motor sport in general. As a company, they are doing a lot for the sport.
‘But there are other companies who have been doing just as much for much longer. We have to make sure that continues.’
However, Domenicali said no one can begrudge Red Bull its success.
‘Even if I do not like to speak directly to our adversaries, Red Bull is a team that is structured very well and won deservedly,’ he is quoted by Tuttosport.
‘But I think that three years of consecutive successes are enough,’ he smiled.
Finland’s Turun Sanomat newspaper said Ferrari will give its 2013 car a brief track debut at Fiorano when it is launched on 1 February, before moving to Jerez for the start of the official test pre-season the following week.